Lifting many of the regulations stifling business competition in Greece would benefit both consumers, through lower prices, and firms, via higher turnover, according to the OECD.
In its Competition Assessment of Greece, released on Monday, the OECD estimates that easing restrictions identified in a number of sectors would have a positive impact on the Greek economy of around 414 million euros.
Barriers to competition can discourage new firms from entering markets, hampering innovation and efficiency. They result in high prices in the shops, low investment and fewer jobs.
“Enhancing competition is critical to Greece’s prosperity,” OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría says in his introduction to the report. “Implementing its recommendations would help reform efforts aimed at getting the economy back on to a sustainable growth path.”
The report is the culmination of the Competition Assessment Project, an independent study requested by the Greek government and supported by the European Commission and Hellenic Competition Commission. The latest assessment is the third undertaken by the OECD and covers five sectors: e-commerce; construction; media; wholesale trade and a number of manufacturing sub-sectors such as chemicals and pharmaceuticals. Together they represent 11.2 pct of Greece’s GDP and 16.7 pct of Greek employment.